Use this report to find chocolate with safer levels of heavy metals

Originally published at: Use this report to find chocolate with safer levels of heavy metals | Boing Boing


From the suggestions on eating safer chocolate:

“Try dark chocolates with lower cacao percentages.”

Yeah, not gonna do that. Tastes worse to me the lower the percentage. 85%-95% is what tastes good to me. Although there is an upper bounds, 100% im not a fan of.

"Alternate with milk chocolate. "

Thats just gross and not even chocolate. I’d rather not eat chocolate than “milk chocolate”.

For the “safe” brands:

Trader joes used to carry Valrhona which i liked, but they stopped a while ago. Miss them.

I’m hesitant to believe any report that recommends Mast as #1 after seeing other news articles about them.


What does that even mean? Is eating a 65% dark really going to reduce your intake that much more than a 95% bar? My friend is truly a chocolate addict. Lots of people say they’re chocolate addicts, but he truly is to the degree his mother and I discussed our concern. Apart from him, I’ve never known anyone who ate enough chocolate for that to make a difference.

This is like the fish thing. If you’re concerned enough about contaminants to stop eating fish, you’d better look into studies of all your favorite foods, because I guarantee it’s as bad if not worse. The answers are always the same: eat more whole foods, more vegetables and fruit than meat, ideally from local sources you can trust and organic where possible. Humans are simply not in a position to eat completely clean food at this point, the best we can do is mitigate the damage.


So the “cad” in Cadbury is for the cadmium??


I try to do the good thing by buying fair trade and/or organic chocolate. But it seems like the Good Place where there are no really good choices, just less bad choices.


I guess white chocolate is right out? :thinking:

GIF by Shalita Grant


Mmmmm, Chadmium!

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Not necessarily–real white chocolate is made with cocoa butter, which is still part of the bean. It isn’t clear at all from the description of the problem if that would make a difference. Admittedly, there is a good amount of milk and sugar in white chocolate, so it would still be less than a high-percentage dark chocolate.

But I’ve still got half of a 3-kilo bag of Taza baking chips in the cabinet, and there’s no way those are getting tossed.

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My son’s cry upon hearing the dreadful news: “Why couldn’t it have been white chocolate??”

This was where I was looking for numbers, which has a lot more listed than the Consumer Reports page.

Moser Roth, the cheap but yummy one from Aldi’s, turns out to be particularly badmium. :frowning:


Damn you Trader Joe’s! I’ve been eating more poorly than previously thought!:pensive:

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The Pb in chocolate was supposed to be peanut butter.


“You got your lead in my cadmium!”

"You got your cadmium in my lead!"


for instance, id be truly surprised if coffee were somehow more safe than chocolate. and i’m not sure i want to know…


The article says that of the food products the FDA looked at, the highest (per serving I think?) three were dark chocolate, cocoa powder, and baking powder. So coffee is down below those, apparently.


The operative word here is “safer”. That does not mean chocolate is generally dangerous in any amount a human is capable of eating.

The dose makes the poison and everything has heavy metals, fecal coliform, and carcinogens in it if you look hard enough. People get so worked up about this stuff, but remember that the only thing that matters is clinical outcomes. Lab test results are not clinical outcomes.

It doesn’t fucking matter much chocolate you eat. You’re still gonna die from a car accident or heart disease at age 70-80 like everyone else. Live your life and stop panicking about every goddam headline like this. Nutrition advice has not changed in 50 years despite everything we’ve learned. Eat mostly plants and exercise. For everything else, the anxiety is doing more harm to you than the substance is.


Aw hell, that long?


What made me so angry about the high levels is my kid. She loves dark chocolate and it is incredibly important to limit lead exposure in children. I was upset for my own sake and incensed that I had been feeding my daughter a supposedly high quality chocolate that could have been harming her.

It also made me wonder and worry- if the chocolate is so full of lead because of the environment, what about the people who live there?


Sounds like you dont get it it. It doesn’t fucking matter!


Sorry, about the worry!

High Five I Got You GIF by TJ Jackson


For people still worried about this, maybe this will help:

Heavy metals are bad in large enough concentrations over a long period of time, but they are not nerve gas or cyanide. Lab tests are not clinical outcomes and you will all be fine. Even your kids.

Key conclusion:

A spokesperson for Health Canada said Monday they have looked into cadmium and lead in food sold in Canada and that chocolate “contributes marginally” to overall dietary exposure.

They emphasized in their emailed statement “consumption of chocolate by the Canadian population does not represent a health concern.”

Alarmist coverage of this sort of thing has made everyone incredibly paranoid and jumpy about everything.

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Good News! Mars Wrigley has been adding contractors to their recipe in order to reduce toxin levels.

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